More than 150 other customers said in Federal Trade Commission complaints that debt collectors calling for CashJar and CashYes harassed them. One borrower says in an interview that CashJar contacted her boss, posing as a police officer. Another said in a complaint that the company called her sister and said she was a slut. “My clients call me in tears because of these payday lenders,” says Charles Juntikka, a bankruptcy lawyer in New York. “I have to tell them you don’t go to jail over debts in America.”
Some of the profits from payday lending flow to institutional investors. Vector Capital, a San Francisco private equity fund, invested in Cane Bay about a year and a half ago, according to three people who used to work at Vector and the former Cane Bay employees. Vector used money it was managing on behalf of Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and other endowments and pension funds. Vector and its investors declined to comment.